|Publisher:||Simon & Schuster|
|Publish Date:||Apr 2012|
|Number of Pages:||0|
|Shipping Weight (in pounds):||0.6|
|Product in Inches (L x W x H):||5.25 x 5.5 x 1.0|
Stephen King was born in Portland, Maine, on September 21, 1947. After graduating with a Bachelor's degree in English from the University of Maine at Orono in 1970, he became a teacher. His spare time was spent writing short stories and novels. King's first novel would never have been published if not for his wife. She removed the first few chapters from the garbage after King had thrown them away in frustration.
Three months later, he received a $2, 500 advance from Doubleday Publishing for the book that went on to sell a modest 13,000 hardcover copies. That book, Carrie, was about a girl with telekinetic powers who is tormented by bullies at school. She uses her power, in turn, to torment and eventually destroy her mean-spirited classmates. When United Artists released the film version in 1976, it was a critical and commercial success.
The paperback version of the book, released after the movie, went on to sell more than two-and-a-half million copies. Many of King's other horror novels have been adapted into movies, including The Shining, Firestarter, Pet Semetary, Cujo, Misery, The Stand, and The Tommyknockers. Under the pseudonym Richard Bachman, King has written the books The Running Man, The Regulators, Thinner, The Long Walk, Roadwork, and Rage. King is one of the world's most successful writers, with more than 100 million copies of his works in print.
Many of his books have been translated into foreign languages, and he writes new books at a rate of about one per year. In 2003, he received the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. In 2012 his title, The Wind Throught the Keyhole made The New York Times Best Seller List.
King's new "Dark Tower" novel, which takes place between volumes four and five of the series that ended in 2004, is a story within a story within a story. Roland, Susannah, Eddie, and Jake, accompanied by Oy the billy-bumbler, are overtaken in their journey to Calla Bryn Sturgis by the Starkblast, a storm of catastrophic proportion. As they wait out the storm in a deserted village, Roland entertains the others with the tale of one his first quests as a young gunslinger, to capture or kill a shape-shifting "skin-man" terrorizing the inhabitants of the remote town of Debaria.
The story leads seamlessly into the retelling of a tale told to Roland by his mother, a fairy tale so dark as to put the Brothers Grimm to shame. Both stories are filled with enough action, suspense, and even poignancy to fill a much larger work of fiction.
Verdict: In his foreword, which gives a brief series background that will allow even the uninitiated thoroughly to enjoy this book, King says that he was "delighted to discover my old friends had a little more to say", and for that we all say thank ya. Fans will be lining up for this one.
[See Prepub Alert, 10/23/11.] - John Harvey, Irving P.L. TX
(c). Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
For those discovering the epic bestselling Dark Tower series for the first time—and for its legions of dedicated fans—an immensely satisfying stand-alone novel and perfect introduction to the series.
Beginning in 1974, gaining momentum in the 1980s and coming to a thrilling conclusion when the last three novels were published in 2003-2004, the Dark Tower epic fantasy saga stands as Stephen King’s most beguiling achievement. It has been the basis for a long-running Marvel comic series.
Now, with The Wind Through the Keyhole, King has returned to the rich landscape of Mid-World. This story within a story within a story finds Roland Deschain, Mid-World’s last gunslinger, in his early days during the guilt-ridden year following his mother’s death. Sent by his father to investigate evidence of a murderous shape-shifter, a “skin-man,” Roland takes charge of Bill Streeter, a brave but terrified boy who is the sole surviving witness to the beast’s most recent slaughter.
Roland, himself only a teenager, calms the boy by reciting a story from the Book of Eld that his mother used to read to him at bedtime. “A person’s never too old for stories,” he says to Bill. “Man and boy, girl and woman, we live for them".
Sure to captivate the avid fans of the Dark Tower epic, this is an enchanting introduction to Roland’s world and the power of Stephen King’s storytelling magic.
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